The Springboks in a huddle Ireland Test

The Springboks in a huddle. Image: X

Springboks suffer major injury blow on eve of squad announcement

The Springboks are set to announce the squad for the two Tests against Ireland on Monday, but they have suffered an unfortunate injury blow.

The Springboks in a huddle Ireland Test

The Springboks in a huddle. Image: X

The Springboks kicked off the 2024 Test season with a comprehensive win over Wales, but the team continues to contend with a lengthy injury list at the start of a jampacked fixture list.

No 8 Jasper Wiese is also currently serving a suspension, and at a time when the Springboks have needed to consider a new option in this position, there was a feeling that young Bulls star Cameron Hanekom would come into the mix.

The 22-year-old boasts physicality, high work rate and is highly effective as both a ball carrier and strong defender. He also possesses that so-called ‘warrior spirit’ that the Springboks value so highly.

However, in an unfortunate blow, respected rugby writer Hendrik Cronje has confirmed that Hanekom suffered a hamstring injury in the URC final. It’s stated that he is now unlikely to be available for the two upcoming Test against Ireland.

After the two-Test series against Ireland, the Springboks will then play a historic match against Portugal in the Incoming Series before the Rugby Championship commences.

Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus had already said the medical team would assess the bumps and bruises suffered in the match before flying to South Africa on Sunday night, as well as the injuries in the Bulls camp following their United Rugby Championship final against the Glasgow Warriors before finalising their squad for the Incoming Series.

The Springboks will arrive in South Africa on Tuesday and the squad announcement for the Incoming Series will then take place.

Unfortunate blow for the Springboks

Extended opportunity for Roos?

The one positive for the Springboks is the fact that Evan Roos did impress at No 8 against Wales.

In what was effectively an audition to see whether he could be the man to step up for the remainder of the season at No 8, he produced a positive and powerful performance.

In all, he made 78 metres, beat three defenders, completed 13 carries and made four tackles.

Zooming in on the game, Erasmus said: “It was a tough match as it always is against Wales. I thought our scrums went well, but we didn’t dominate the collisions. We also conceded a try, but we scored five and we could have scored a more, but those are things we need to work on going forward.

“It was a beneficial game for us because some players were not eligible for selection and a guy like Jasper Wiese is still out (on suspension), while some of the Japanese players haven’t played in a while. But the young guys stepped up to the plate and played really well.”